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Andrea Mitchell Reports

News/Business. Interviews with political figures with host Andrea Mitchell. New.

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Israel 25, Benghazi 8, America 7, Us 7, Susan Rice 6, Andrea Mitchell 6, Richard Engel 5, Lindsey Graham 5, Clinton 5, Washington 5, Msnbc 5, Mike Rogers 5, Cairo 5, Egypt 4, Stephanie Gosk 4, United States 4, Chris Cizilla 4, Citi 3, U.n. 3, Barbara Lee 3,
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  MSNBC    Andrea Mitchell Reports    News/Business. Interviews with political  
   figures with host Andrea Mitchell. New.  

    November 19, 2012
    10:00 - 11:00am PST  

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people there thronged to see his motorcade and he paid his respects to burma's nobel laureate, aung san suu kyi, a break through visit he credited in part to his secretary of state's leadership. >> i could not be more grateful not only for your service, hillary, but also for the powerful message that you and aung san suu kyi send about the importance of women and men everywhere embracing and promoting democratic values and human rights. >> benghazi politics. democrats firmly deny republican charges of a cover-up. >> you believe that the president or anybody serving the president deliberately misled the american people about the true nature of this attack for political reasons. >> inno. >> absolutely not? >> that's correct. >> and on the scandal front, paula broadwell rejoins her family at home in north carolina and on "meet the press," a top republican suggests for the first time that president obama
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may have known about the petraeus affair long before the election. >> i'm not sure the president hasn't -- was not told before election day. the attorney general said that the state -- excuse me, the department of justice did not notify the president. but we don't know if the attorney general -- >> that's new. that's news. the president knew before election day? >> i didn't say that. i said i don't know. >> and governor chris christie brings some jersey attitude to weekend update. >> i do not thank any of the stupid mayors who ignored my evacuation orders, you're idiots! and when you ignore me, it makes you look like a real seth meyers. >> oh come on. >> i'm talking here. >> all right. >> i also do not want to thank the reporters that put themselves in danger. you know, by walking into the middle of the hurricane with their cameras. we don't need you to tell us there's a hurricane. we have windows. >> message delivered. good day. i'm andrea mitchell live in
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washington. no cease-fire and at least 30,000 israeli re servists perhaps more are amassed at the gaza border. surrounding roads have been closed and the soldiers cell phones have been confiscated to preserve battlefield secrecy. since the pace of hostilities escalated last wednesday more than 500 hamas rockets have fallen in israel. israeli air strikes have killed at least 90 gazans. nbc's richard engel, stephanie gosk and ayman mohyeldin are in the region reporting the latest from gaza to tel aviv. first richard engel in gaza, what is the latest from your vantage point and on the cease-fire negotiations? >> we are hearing that there are serious cease-fire negotiations going on right now. when you're on the ground here in gaza it doesn't exactly feel that way. there have been many air strikes today, a media building was killed. israel is sort of --
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[ inaudible ] on hamas leader or one palestinian militant at a time. sources who are involved in the israeli/palestinian negotiations working toward a cease-fire, these talks taking place in cairo have told nbc news they are serious, that they are making progress and that this is how the negotiations stand right at this moment. the israelis want a two-part deal, a two-stage deal. the first part would be an immediate hostility, immediate cessation of violence, both sides stop attacking each other. that would be unconditional. then israel would want to move to a second stage where the two sides, israel and the palestinians, would engage in this discussions, negotiations overs the next two weeks to one month talking about potentially ending the siege on gaza, making it easier for palestinians -- >> and clearly we're having
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difficulty with richard's reporting. surmounts any difficult of technology. richard is reporting on negotiations in cairo -- amman, you're in gaza as well. negotiations would be a immediate cessation of hostilities and a two-stage process within two weeks to a month there would be a broader agreement. we've known from the start that israel wants to do something about changing the reality where these rocket attacks do not continue to come from gaza. at the same time where you're standing in gaza there's a lot of criticism about the counterfire that's come from israel and the way they've been targeting areas that are very dense civilian areas. >> that's correct. in fact a lot of people have been describing it as two types. one it's a disproportionate use of force and more importantly a form of collective punishment. both of those are characteristic that international organizations have used to describe the israeli measures in the past.
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gaza is one of the most densely populated areas in the world. israel claims to be using precision or strategic strikes to hit specific buildings and targets. but the reality is, we have seen time and time again, you may be intending to hit one target but because of the population and the density you're affecting the entire neighborhood. we saw that yesterday in an incident on sunday in which a family of 12 people were killed because israel was targeting the house of a suspected militant. they killed the militant but at the same time they killed 12 people among them four women and four children. people are saying that is not acceptable collateral damage and itlogical feeds the type -- it only feeds the type of generations in future palestinians that are not going to be acceptable, if you will, to any kind of peace plan. they say you cannot solve this problem militarily. it can only be solved through diplomatic means through negotiation, but that's impossible when you can't even get the two sides to recognize one another. that is really the hurdle that the long-term peace process has to deal with and the short-term
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peace process in terms of getting an immediate truce brokered through the egyptians. >> stephanie gosk, thanks to you, ayman, from gaza. stephanie gosk is in tel aviv. how do the israelis respond to the criticism of the civilian casualties that have occurred? they have been talking about the bombardment that israeli citizens have been enduring for many, many months, if not years. >> well, the line from the israeli defense forces is that hamas is going to be hit where they are sitting up and they are, in effect, using civilians as human shields and that is what they said today about the -- about hitting this international media center in gaza. they were going after an islamic jihad leader, but instead it also injured some journalists and they said that's just going to happen, that they are the right to defend themselves. this issue of collateral damage is exbe dreamily important, whether talking about civilians in gaza or here and that's the
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kind of thing that can really get in the way of these peace negotiations. one of the things on this side that has been so helpful so far and has given the diplomatic maneuvering a bit of breathing room, the iron dome missile defense system which has proven to be so successful here. it has limited the collateral damage on the ground in israel significantly. there were three deaths but after that there haven't been any. as a result, they can talk about these. if there was an incident that killed a lot of people here, we would be in a different situation. >> stephanie gosk and richard engel, trying to get richard engel back, thanks to you, stephanie and ayman. richard, we heard your reporting about a two-step process. what more can you tell us about the negotiations an the terms each side is trying to negoti e negotiate? >> we have some new information. i'll go through it quickly. israeli drones in the sky which are wreaking havoc with our equipment.
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what we've been told by negotiators is that israel wants a two-step process. first, for hamas to immediately stop firing rockets in exchange israel will also stop firing. that will be an unconditional cessation of hostilities. then, israel and the palestinians would engage in negotiations over the next two weeks to one month to talk about lifting the siege on gaza, making it easier for palestinians to travel and trade and potentially discussing also stopping future israeli assassinations of militant leaders. hamas doesn't want to proceed this way. they want a one step process, that in exchange for stopping the violence, israel will immediately lift the siege on gaza, allowing palestinians to travel and trade and also promise immediately to stop killing future palestinian militant leaders. the negotiations are ongoing. we've been told that the israeli
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delegation has returned to tel aviv to discuss this position with the israeli government. more talks are expected tomorrow in cairo. we've also been told that the egyptian side is so far more favorable to the hamas position. >> richard engel, thank you very much. thanks for the latest on the negotiations from gaza and this weekend, president obama made it absolutely clear that he sides with israel in this dispute with hamas. >> there's no country on earth that would tolerate missiles raining down on its citizens from outside its borders. we are fully supportive of israel's right to defend itself from missiles landing on people's homes. and work places and potentially killing civilians. >> long-time middle east diplomat dennis ross joins me now, just back from israel last night. dennis, first of all, the ban ki-moon, the u.n. secretary
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general now is planning, be according to the u.n., to meet with netanyahu in israel after meets in cairo with president morsi and abbas in the west bank. up until this point the u.n. has not been a player here. what is your understanding of the terms of engagement in the efforts to reach a cease-fire? >> well, i think what you -- the report you heard are probably pretty close to accurate, that the fact is from the israeli standpoint, they don't want an outcome that produces a cease-fire and two weeks from now this starts all over again. when they mobilize this many troops, it's not so easy to keep them mobilized for a long period of time. the notion that somehow this is just penn state fu-- posturing their part. hamas wants to be in a position where the passages get open and palestinians are free to travel and so fort.
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that has an egyptian dimension. the egyptians even under the new egypt than government, have not created a free trade area, a free area for movement and so forth. egypt has a interest in trying to move things along. no doubt they're adopting -- they're going to support the hamas position at one level, but the fact is the israelis want certainty if the cease-fire is going to take place, what is the guarantee that this is not something that's going to break down after a couple weeks? >> now one of the things that michael orrin, the israeli ambassador told us last thursday on the program is, we want to get to those stockpiles of rockets. how realistic is that when they are higher grade, longer range rockets being smuggled in in the last couple years, you don't have an egyptian partner like mubarak who is going to try to shut down those tunnels. israel has some real concerns and hamas has access to much better weaponry. >> it does. that also gets back to part of
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the purpose of what the israelis are doing. a, the israelis going after targets designed to destroy this capability that hamas has. so when you talk about collateral damage, it's because a lot of the rockets are put in highly populated areas. >> this is one of the most dense populated areas in the world. >> in the world. absolutely. >> the square mile of gaza. >> when one talks about collateral damage on the other side, hamas is shooting rockets at civilian areas. their targets are civilians. it's not collateral damage. their targets are that. there's an asem try built in. the israelis would like to have an outcome here where you can't have whatever they destroy, they can't then suddenly be allowed to rebuild. mubarak did very little to shut downs the movement of arms in the gaza. they allowed the smuggling tunnels to exist. >> interesting. >> they represent a threat to the egyptian government even today. because the fact is, you know, what's happened in sana'a you have a lot of jihadedy forces
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there who end up focusing not only on the israelis but egypt. president morsi has an interest himself in doing something much more dramatic that has been the case before. >> what's your bottom line? you've spoken to everyone there. do you think there will be a ground invasion? >> i think that the last thing the israelis would like to do is have to go in on the ground. they know this is an expensive proposition. but they're not going to allow a situation where you go through this problem and have to repeat it after a couple weeks. >> what do you say to those who suggest this is just netanyahu trying to improve his chances for election? >> yeah -- >> guaranteed election in any case, is he not? >> i don't buy it. >> not politically timed. what happened in the last couple weeks is hamas is doing less and less to stop jihadi forces in gaza from firing rockets on israel number one. number two, they began to assume responsibility for some of these attacks. three, in the last two weeks, they began to attack israeli forces patrolling the border. it was as if what hamas was
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trying to do is create a new normal, where because israel was facing an election, preoccupied with that, preoccupied with iran, they really wouldn't want to escalate. and because they had a muslim brotherhood dominated government they thought the egyptians will be on our side. they thought they could create a new normal and the israelis said if you think you can create a new normal where we're going to have a million of our people subjected to going into shelters all the time, think again. >> and we just have a couple seconds left. morsi, the new unknown, what has changed all of this, is the arab spring quote/unquote and the fact that you've got a muslim brotherhood leader in egypt who's been pressured over and over again by president obama, if you want your money, is the subject, you want your economy to revive and survive, you had better put pressure on hamas. is he? >> i believe actually he is. i believe you have public rhetoric that is both responsive to his own emotional interests, but a private reality where they are putting pressure on. they are now the ones trying to
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broker a deal and they're brokering a deal they'll be able in the end to say look, hamas is better off, but a deal also in the end ensures that israel isn't going to be subject to this over and over again. >> dennis ross, thank you so much. thanks for being here. >> my pleasure. >> up next in our daily fix, president obama makes history in southeast asia. plus, the political showdown over benghazi. this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. into their work, their name on the door,
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the first sitting american president to visit myanmar, known as burma, was greeting by cheering clouds eager to catch a glance of the u.s. commander in chief. president obama and secretary clinton paid that emotional visit to aung san suu kyi whom the president called an icon of democracy. joining me for our daily fix, chris cizilla, msnbc contributor
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and managing editor of post politics.com and mark halperin, senior political analyst for "time" and msnbc. chris cizilla, first to you, pretty extraordinary seeing the president in myanmar and burma with aung san suu kyi, i remember going in 1995 when madeleine albright was trying to pay a visit to her and she was under house arrest and, of course, hillary clinton over the years. but what about the criticism that he is too soon awarding these countries that are just beginning to transition to democracy? and in cambodia the human rights abuses? >> you heard the president address this and say, look, i'm not saying everything is how we would like it to be, but i think there is value in saying it's better than it was. look, i mean i think this is a point at which reasonable people can disagree. the president clearly views this as we need to incentivize when countries are moving away from
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an authoritarian model we need to incentivize them. going there does not mean i sanction everything that this country is doing. same with cambodia. we need to send positive signals because we need to try to roll the ball forward. otherwise, what role do we have? again, it is a view of foreign policy that president obama espouses. it's not a view that is universally held in this country, but that's why he's the president of the united states. he gets to do these sorts of things, he can agree or disagree, but it's quite clear what he's trying to incentivize and trying to do. >> and he's also trying to look forward asia, part of their foreign policy, but with actually our oldest ally, thailand, in the region, he seemed to have a lot of fun. did you see some of the pictures, mark, with the prime minister of thailand? they seemed to be really enjoying their joint press conference, show some of those shots. >> i did. the president got to engrashate himself saying how much he likes
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thai food. the u.s. switches attention, shifts self-consciously and openly from europe and some of the older world problems towards asia, the military containment is part of it and so issing the right balance between our economic interests and human rights. i think this trip is probably a smart thing even though as chris said there's second guessing of it because this is a country that's moved faster than anyone thought it could. plenty of pockets, most especially china, and north korea, and others, where america can use its influence in this region to bring about more human rights, women's rights, more rights for children, more emphasis on free markets so i think the president, by going in and giving a well-crafted speech, same kind of rhetoric in thailand, i think this is a successful trip. as long as the president is stressing not enough progress but headed in the right direction i think it's a great use of his megaphone and use of american power. >> wasne want to get to benghaz with both of you.
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lindsey graham raised questions on "meet the press" and also mike rogers, the chair of the house intelligence committee did as well. let's play a little bit of lindsey graham. >> this white house mislead the american people about national security events? i think they might simply because when the bin laden raid occurred they leaked every detail about the raid. we heard detailed about classified information to make this president look good, so if they would leak classified information to make him look good would they withhold information to prevent him from looking bad. >> the republicans are not going top drop this and, in fact, on "meet the press," mike rogers raised an entirely new subject. he suggested that there should be questions asked about whether, since eric holder the attorney general knew about the petraeus situation, whether in some informal way that was communicated to the president? let me ask you first, mark, what about that suggestion? >> well, look, this issue is not
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become a bipartisan yet in the skepticism you hear from lindsey graham and john mccain. it's a clear division between the two sides it's divided the three amigos. even senator lieberman who normally sides with senator graham and mccain doesn't have the same view on this stuff. we don't see foreign policy scandals huge issues sustain unless members of the president's own party raises question. mike rogers has questions, lindsey graham. i believe the administration if it has as strong a case as it does, secretary clinton should brief them in private, public would be better, she would make more progress in private, to let them know what the facts are. >> chris cizilla, what about hillary clinton trying to put this to rest for the administration when, in fact, she could have testified in the first place or not testified, could have come on the sunday talk shows but it was not something she does and it was a
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hot potato and the white house seemed eager to put susan rice in that seat. >> i agree totally. i think mark is right, that the right thing probably to do is more information is better than less information on this topic. i watch "meet the press" yesterday, i watched your reaction after mike rogers. i had a similar reaction. kind of throwing that allegation of maybe the president knew without any evidence behind that claim, is particularly when it relates to foreign policy this is a serious charge here. i would say for all the talk of bipartisanship, at least the talk of bipartisanship on the fiscal cliff, this is a place where the parties at least at the moment disagree vehemently. i would always suggest a little bit more caution when we're talking about foreign policy than domestic policy. but partisanship has not ended at the water's edge on this one. >> chris cizilla and mark halperin, we have to leave it there for now. 15 million americans living in
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poverty, a subject not addressed during the campaign, los angeles mayor antonio villaraigosa, and a new report says it has to be cut in half in the next ten years. we'll find out next on "andrea mitchell reports." ♪ i'd like to thank eating right, whole grain, multigrain cheerios! mom, are those my jeans? [ female announcer ] people who choose more whole grain tend to weigh less than those who don't. multigrain cheerios
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poverty is a national epidemic affecting nearly 15 million people across our country, 16 million children. a report released today from the half in ten campaign outlines where we're falling short in fixing the problem and how to make big steps, take steps toward a solution. joining me in washington, is a real player on this, los angeles mayor antonio vil ra go sa, keynote speaker this morning. thanks for joining us. what do we do first? the country is at a crossroads facing the fiscal cliff, negotiations over taxes, spending cuts, spending cuts in the domestic area that will affect people living in poverty most. >> a year and a half ago we were
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at aspen and i talked about simpson-bowles being a template, you don't have to agree with everything in it, but we need a balanced approach to resolving this fiscal cliff. we have to -- we need more revenue but we also need to cut spending. we need to do it in a smart way. we need to cut red tape bureaucracy but make investments in programs like child nutrition, like the earned income tax credit, extending unemployment insurance. we these to make sure that we're making investments that will pay dividends down the line. just the cost of child poverty is a half a trillion dollars for the u.s. economy. when you make these investments, they pay dividends down the line. the cost of investing some of our poverty programs like child nutrition, about $90 billion a year. but pay dividends down the line. the center for american progress
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today talked about programs that work, that are effective, that have metric behind that success, and programs that we need to support. you know, the republican budget cut in their plan to cut the defic deficit, cut about 75%, 75% of the cuts were focused on these programs. and that's not the right way to go. >> well, how important is it for you and others who believe in this particular fight to pressure the white house not to give in to some of the demands or pressure republicans to moderate some of their budget cuts. >> now that the campaign is over, i get to do what mayors do all around the country and that is, say to our folks in the beltway, we need to get away from orthodoxy and focus on what works. we need to make investments in people, in education, in health care, in infrastructure, we need to make sure that both parties are working together to get away
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from the notion that there are certain things off the table, the sacred cows. we have to get rid of them. everything needs to be on the table, whether it's entitlements, social security, medicare, whether it's erasing the taxes back to where they were during the clinton years. when we created 23 million jobs and we went from deficit to surpluses. we've got to make investments in people again and our report focuses on some of those investments. >> and finally, in terms of some of the tax credits, what about tapping some of these deductions? are you concerned the middle class will get squeezed and end up having more people in poverty? >> we need to attack some of those credits, but we need to do it in a smart way, fair way, in a way that shoulders the responsibility and the burden all across the board. i should pay a little more in taxes than the people who work for me who make a lot less. that's not a radical notion.
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that's a notion we've accepted for a long time. we can focus on more revenues, make the cuts we need, make the investments in health care, in child nutrition and the earned income tax, and infrastructure and r and d and work force training that put america forward, that builds our economy from the inside out. >> mr. mayor, thank you very much. thanks for joining us. >> thanks for having me. >> up next, the war of words over susan rice from the senate and house foreign relations committee, senator johnny isaacson and senator barbara lee. this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. wants that pink castle thing. and you really don't want to pay more than you have to. only citi price rewind automatically searches for the lowest price. and if it finds one, you get refunded the difference. just use your citi card and register your purchase online. have a super sparkly day! ok. [ male announcer ] now all you need is a magic carriage. citi price rewind. buy now. save later.
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>> as the benghazi investigation continues so are the arguments over who's to blame and over whether ambassador susan rice should be caught in this crossfire. joining me is senator johnny isaacson, a member of the senate foreign relations committee, which is investigating the benghazi attack. senator, thank you very much for joining us today. >> thank you, andrea. >> you've been following this very closely, i know. tell us, what is your reaction to something that mike rogers, the house intelligence chair, said or suggested on "meet the press." he said he has no evidence of this and no evidence has been brought to bear but he suggested that questions should be asked about when the president first learned, for instance, about the petraeus affair, whether it's credible he did not know until after the election? do you have any information about that? >> no, i don't. i would only be guessing if i tried to answer the question, but the more important question is, who knew what when with regard to benghazi, with regard to whether or not it was a terrorist attack, and with
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regard to the fact for the first time since 1979 america lost an ambassador in harm's way. that's something we need answers for. >> well, it seems very clear that there were plenty of warnings, that the intelligence community repeatedly told washington that there was trouble in benghazi, that it was not secure, that the libyans could not secure it, that there had been, in fact, five separate attacks, so didn't washington have fair warning it needed do something about the security there? >> it had fair warning. in fact, the brits had already pulled their consulate out of benghazi. we had several other eight bomb attacks going back as far as june. it was obviously a danger. we find out when a diary was recovered from chris stevens that was found he said he thought he was al qaeda's number one target. there were lots of warnings and we should have had better security and a better warning in terms of specific event that took place at the consulate. >> the white house says that there was no change made in the intelligence assessment other than to change one word,
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technically to change it from sun consulate to diplomatic mission, to be accurate, because it was not a full consulate. do you believe the white house when it says there was no political interference in the intelligence assessment and/or the guidelines from which susan rice was working when she went on television that sunday? >> i have heard enough testimony both classified as well as other to believe that we knew early on in the attack that it was terrorist related and could have been al qaeda related. we didn't have the military personnel close enough to engage and protect our ambassador. i think that's pretty much a known fact now or has been stated by a number of different people in testimony. and if that's the case, we need to answer the questions why and what are we going to do to see to it in the future america doesn't lose a diplomat because we weren't prepared to protect him in the first place. >> are you more concerned about that than the aftermath than how it was reportped and she presented it, given that she was working off the guidelines she had been given?
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>> i think susan rice was reading on those sunday shows the five shows, she was reading what she was told to read. i've been around washington to know long enough when you represent the administration, they give you the talking points and you repeat the talking points. so i think that's what happened to susan rice. i need to know and we need to know and america needs to know and chris stevens' family needs to know when we knew it was a terrorist attack, why we weren't prepared for it and the ambassador lost his life. >> thank you, senator. thank you for joining us today. joining me now is california congresswoman barbara lee, a member of the house foreign affairs committee. congresswoman, a lot of attacks against susan rice who seems to be the messenger delivering a message. do you think that she should be held to account for the what the intelligence community decided to make public? >> first of all, ambassador rice would be der re elect in her duty had she not brought forward the information which the intelligence community provided. this has evolved and, of course,
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we have a tragic, traj igs situation where four of our diplomats were tragically killed and we have to get to the bottom of it. i think what's also so offensive and wrong is that we are attacking this ambassador for doing her job. and we need to make sure that we stop the politicizing of this and get the facts. that needs to be done. this has to stop right away. i think that once the facts are put forward, then we will know how to proceed to make sure that a tragedy such as this does not happen again. also, let me just say with regard to ambassador rice, she's dr. rice, a rhodes scholar, she graduated and got her, ph.d. from oxford university, been in key position with the national security council. i've known her many years. she's a brilliant woman, engaged in tough negotiations on behalf of the united states. when you look at what she has done with regard to enhanced sanctions against north korea and iran, she's done an amazing job as ambassador.
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so there's no reason to question her intelligence, her experience and her credibility. she has done a great job and continues to look out in terms of the -- for the united states' best interest in terms of our national security interests. >> dianne feinstein referred to what's going on as character assassination. why do you think that she's gotten herself caught in this? why do you think that some of the republicans on the hill are blaming her for what happened in benghazi or the way it was presented? >> i don't think, andrea, she's gotten herself caught in anything. as i said, she has done her job and she is doing her job. there's some terrible -- >> i guess what i'm trying to ask is, why do you think they're going after her? >> well, first of all, she was confirmed in 2009, when she was brought forward as our united nations representative. so i have no idea. of course she's a strong, brilliant woman. she's a person who puts forth on the talk shows the information that the intelligence community
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had provided to her. and so i think we need to ask senator mccain and those who are attacking her why they're doing this. i think it's politically motivated and i think that they really are being very wrong in their attacks and they need to stop it because she is looking out for and has acted on behalf of the united states' best interest. >> barbara lee, thank you, congresswoman. >> thank you. >> up next, the fiscal cliffhanger. is it going to take divine intervention? this is "andrea mitchell reports" only on msnbc. mom? who's mom? i'm the giants mascot. the giants don't have a mascot! ohhh! eat up! new jammin jerk chicken soup has tasty pieces of chicken with rice and beans. hmmm. for giant hunger! thanks mom! see ya! whoaa...oops! mom? i'm ok. grandma? hi sweetie! she operates the head. [ male announcer ] campbell's chunky soup. it fills you up right.
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she operates the head. you a "stag provisions"rule" on edown every block, or a "hugh and crye" in every town. these are the small businesses of america, and all across the nation they're getting ready for their day. hundreds of thousands of small businesses are preparing for november 24, a day to open doors, and welcome the millions of customers who will turn out to shop small. small business saturday. visit shopsmall.com and get ready. because your day is coming. president obama is appealing to a higher calling to avoid falling off the fiscal cliff. joking to a beau dast monk in tie and he could use a spiritual assist working with the federal budget. >> i always believe in prayer. i believe in prayer when i go to
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church back home, and if a beau dis monk is wishing me well i will take whatever good vibes he can give me. >> it might take prayers. joining me brendan, former communications director for nancy pelosi, and mark mckinnon, distributor to the daily beast. what about the need for prayer, brendan? you've been through budget negotiations and saw the democratic leader nancy pelosi said over the weekend that there is no give on the, you know, fundamental demand about some adjustment on tax rates. >> right. >> top rates, that you can't get enough by capping deductions to make up what you need to get some balance going forward. what about prayer? is that going to be helpful? >> prayer is always helpful and so is trying to work together in a constructive way. i think the meeting the leaders had at the white house with president obama last week, both sides came out and said we have to get something done. i am optimistic.
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there's a lot of tough issues that have to be worked out but i think they can do it. >> mark, all joking aside, are you as optimistic? i read between the lines and you see speaker boehner clearly wants a deal and, perhaps, has more leverage now with the house republican caucus, but once you get down to the actual negotiations, there are some very tough issues here, a reason this has not been resolved in previous summits. >> that's right but i am optimistic there was a clear mandate, the mandate was for solving our problems. i'm encouraged at no labels.org, an organization that has about 600,000 people, is putting together a group of 40 members of congress evenly split between democrats and republicans who are agreeing to come together as a problem solver's caucus, that the leadership can go to and cut deals on these important problems like the fiscal cliff, education. we have members of congress that recognize that people want them
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to be problem solvers and work across the aisle. we'll be announcing these 40 members in short order and that represents the kind of mood we're seeing in the shift in congress. >> let me ask you both about mitt romney's post-election comments last wednesday, be in a telephone conference call with donors. many of the donors not too happy apparently or understandably with the election results. and the reaction -- well, david gregory asked lindsey graham about it and his reaction yesterday on "meet the press." >> we're in a big hole. we're not getting out of it by comments like that. when you're in a hole, stop digging. he keeps digging. most people are on public asiens don't have a character flaw. they just have a tough life. i want to create more jobs and the focus should be on how to create more jobs, not demonize those who find themselves in hard times. >> mark, seems to be a real struggle right now for the heart and soul and future of the
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republican party. >> well, actually, andrea, i'm encouraged about what's happening in the republican party. there's been a loud and strong consensus like that just reflected by lindsey graham. not a lot of people defending mitt romney. in fact, most of the republican party recognized that the elections have consequences, that the republican party needs to do a lot of adapting to the reality, recognizing reality, and creating a new vision and paradigm for the republican party going forward. we have to expand, be more tolera tolerant, diverse and have policies that recognize the modern american and the needs that people have today. i think there's a big shift happening faster than i expected to see. >> and brendan, is a democratic party going to have some movement on immigration reform? the president said to the "des moines register" before the election this was going to be one of his top priorities, but you're going to have to get the unions on board, a lot of the interest groups on board to have
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real immigration reform. >> i think that's right. i think we can do that. i was at a summit last week that james carville and mary mag lin hosted. mark is is right about everybod there, the comments mr. romney made was the day before. everybody said that's not helpful. on an immigration, we agree that has to be done. there are a lot of elements in the republican party that want to get it done, i think. we have to figure out a way to make it happen, and sthaets something the president will push for next year. >> mark, it's already starting, 2016. marco rubio this weekend was at terry branstad's birthday in iowa, and now according to the pittsburgh paper he's asked for an invitation to go to new hampshire in february for a lincoln day event. they're off and running. >> well, again, i see that as a good stein for the republican party. as republicans they're already talking and thinking about young, vibrant and new leadership that is rethinking
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the old paradigms. it's a quick gun on 2016. it's an acknowledgment by the republican party we need to look to new, younger faces and new leadership in the party for a new direction for the future. >> in the democratic party, new faces, or the person who came in second for the nomination? >> it really depends. if hillary clinton runs, i think she would be the front-runner tlchlt may be others that get in. it's amazing the coverage of marco rubio already. here we had this election, and we're talking about 2016. >> isn't it partly because the results were so clear that the hispanic vote is increasingly important and that republicans are getting a smaller and smaller share of it. >> they kaecan't be a viable pa if they can't do that. they have to do something with immigration. there are opportunities here to work together to get it done. if they don't, they can't be a viable party the way they're going. >> brandon daly, great to see you. mark mckin none, thank you very
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much. we'll be right back. clusters of pustules, pimples. i had this shingle rash right next to my spine. the soreness was excruciating. it was impossible to even think about dancing. when you're dancing, your partner is holding you. so, his hand would have been right in the spot that i had the shingles. no tango. no rhumba. you can't be touched. for more of the inside story, visit shinglesinfo.com
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that does it for this edition of "andrea mitchell reports." tomorrow we have former middle east negotiator aaron david miller, the latest on the clash in gaza and vanessa kerry the daughter of john kerry but more importantly leading a nonprofit, the global health service corps. follow the show online and on twitter @mitchellreports. hi, tamron. >> in the next hour all eyes on egypt. we're following developing news out of the middle east as they're trying to broker a cease-fire between israel and gaza. nbc's first read team asks, can egypt convince hamas it's in their best interest to stop the missile strikes? we'll get two live reports from the region. "time" magazine's jim frederick will join us live. any minute now lawyers are going to a bankrupt court hearing. will any part of the brand
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. hi, everyone. i'm tamron hall. the "news nation" is following the middle east in skrisz. all eyes are on cairo where egyptian negotiators are attempting to broker a cease-fire to end days of cross-border fire between israel and gaza. even as diplomatic efforts step up, israel kept uplele nonstop assault on gaza. israeli air strikes hit dozens of targets in gaza today. the bloodshed is growing worse. in gaza 95 have been killed including 23 children. in israel three people were killed by militant rockets targeted over the border into southern israel. hamas vowing to keep up its attacks unless israel lifts its blockade of gaza. israeli leaders say they're open to a

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